Home ownership in the UK: Key statistics for 2024

How many people own a house in the UK and who has a mortgage?

Buying a home is a goal for many people living in the UK, who first need to find the right mortgage and secure a deposit. But how many people actually own their home and how many are renters?

We look at the latest statistics on home ownership in the UK, including breakdowns by age and occupation and interactive maps of home ownership in different regions.

Home ownership statistics: Highlights

  • 63% of people own their home in England and Wales, making up 15.5 million households.
  • 48% of home owners have a mortgage, loan or shared ownership, while 52% own their property outright.
  • 37% of the population rents in England and Wales, making up 9.3 million households.
  • In London, less than half of residents (47%) are home owners. This is the only region where the majority are renters.

How many people own a house in the UK?

Official data shows that 63% of people in England and Wales own their home. This makes up 15.5 million households in the UK. Home ownership is slightly higher in Wales than England, where 66% of the population own their property compared to 62%.

What percentage of home owners have a mortgage?

48% of home owners have a mortgage or loan for their accommodation or bought it with shared ownership, which is around 7.8 million people. This means that more than half of home owners (52%) in England and Wales own their homes outright.

How many people rent in the UK?

37% of the population rents in the UK, comprising 9.3 million households. 20% of people rent privately, making up 5 million households across England and Wales. 17% are social renters, making up 4.2 million households – this is where you rent your home from the council or a housing association.

Status Percentage Number of households
Own outright 32.80% 8.1 million
Own with a mortgage or other agreement 29.70% 7.4 million
Private renters 20.30% 5 million
Social rented sector 17.10% 4.2 million
Live rent free 0.10% 33,000

Percentage of home owners in the UK by age

More than three-quarters (77%) of those aged 65 and over are home owners in England, compared to around a third (35%) of those aged 16 to 34. Meanwhile, more than half (56%) of those aged 35 to 49 are home owners, and 7 in 10 50- to 64-year-olds (69%) are home owners.

It is not surprising that the level of home ownership increases with age, as it takes time for people to save up a deposit for a home and be in a steady financial position to take out a mortgage if they need one.

Younger people are, therefore, more likely to rent, with the proportion of renters at around two-thirds (65%) in 16- to 34-year-olds but dropping to less than a quarter (23%) in 65-year-olds and older.

Age group Owns outright Owns with a mortgage, loan or shared ownership Social rented Private rented or lives rent free
16-34 years 4.0% 31.3% 18.4% 46.4%
35-49 years 7.7% 47.8% 17.3% 27.1%
50-64 years 32.7% 35.9% 17.5% 14.0%
65+ 71.0% 6.4% 15.8% 6.8%

Where in the UK has the most home owners?

The level of home ownership is highest in the South East of England, with 67.1% of accommodation in this region owned rather than rented. This is followed by the South West (67%), Wales (66.4%), the East Midlands (66.3%) and East of England (66.2%).

There are slightly lower levels of home ownership in the West Midlands (63.6%), Yorkshire and the Humber (63.1%), the North West (63%) and the North East (60.7%).

Meanwhile, home ownership is much lower in London, as less than half of residents (46.8%) are home owners. This is the only region in England and Wales where the majority of residents rent rather than own their accommodation.

You can see a breakdown of home ownership by local authority in the map below.

Region Percentage of homeowners Percentage of renters
South East 67.10% 32.90%
South West 67.00% 33.10%
Wales 66.40% 33.60%
East Midlands 66.30% 33.70%
East of England 66.20% 33.80%
West Midlands 63.60% 36.30%
Yorkshire and The Humber 63.10% 36.90%
North West 63.00% 37.00%
North East 60.70% 39.30%
London 46.80% 53.20%

Home ownership in London

While London is the region with the lowest proportion of home owners, this also varies significantly depending on the borough. Havering in the east of London has 71% of home owners, which is above the national average. This is similar in Bexley (70%) and Bromley (69%).

At the other end of the spectrum, just 1 in 4 households in Tower Hamlets (26%) are owned. This is similar in Hackney (27%), Westminster (28%), Islington (28%) and Camden (30%).

Borough Percentage of homeowners Percentage of renters
Havering 70.5% 29.5%
Bexley 69.9% 30.1%
Bromley 69.4% 30.6%
Sutton 65.5% 34.5%
Richmond upon Thames 63.1% 36.9%
Kingston upon Thames 61.5% 38.5%
Harrow 59.9% 40.1%
Redbridge 58.1% 41.9%
Hillingdon 57.8% 42.2%
Merton 56.7% 43.3%
Croydon 56.1% 43.9%
Barnet 53.7% 46.3%
Enfield 53.4% 46.6%
Waltham Forest 50.6% 49.4%
Ealing 48.3% 51.7%
Hounslow 47.8% 52.2%
Wandsworth 44.3% 55.7%
Barking and Dagenham 44.1% 55.9%
Lewisham 43.4% 56.6%
Greenwich 43.3% 56.7%
Brent 40.4% 59.6%
Haringey 38.9% 61.1%
City of London 36.8% 63.2%
Lambeth 34.8% 65.2%
Hammersmith and Fulham 33.6% 66.4%
Newham 33.2% 66.8%
Kensington and Chelsea 32.7% 67.3%
Southwark 31.3% 68.7%
Camden 30.4% 69.6%
Islington 28.4% 71.6%
Westminster 28.1% 71.9%
Hackney 27.1% 72.9%
Tower Hamlets 25.7% 74.3%

Affordability index for home owners

We’ve looked at the percentage of current home owners, average house prices and salary in each region in England and Wales to assess how likely it is that someone living there will be able to purchase a house.

The index factors in the likelihood of owning a house in each region, the amount you would need to pay to own a property and the average income in each area. We have scored each region out of 10 based on these factors.

People in the South East are most likely to be able to afford a home based on these factors, with a home ownership affordability score of 7. They are followed by those in the South West, with a score of 6.7, and those in Wales, with a score of 6.3.

At the other end of the scale, people living in London are least likely to be able to afford home ownership, with a score of 4. People in the North East also have a lower score of 4.3 and the North East and North West follow them, both scoring 5.

While salaries are highest in London, home ownership rates are low in large part due to high house prices. Meanwhile, while house prices are low in the North East, salaries are also low compared to other regions, reducing the likelihood of home ownership.

Region Average house price Average salary Percentage of existing homeowners Afforability score
South East £377,162 £37,648 67.1% 7.0
South West £318,966 £34,528 67.0% 6.7
Wales £213,816 £33,072 66.4% 6.3
East Midlands £248,390 £33,280 66.3% 5.7
East of England £342,489 £36,712 66.2% 5.7
West Midlands £252,532 £33,904 63.6% 5.3
Yorkshire and The Humber £207,501 £32,864 63.1% 5.0
North West £218,353 £33,748 63.0% 5.0
North East £157,557 £31,928 60.7% 4.3
London £508,037 £41,392 46.8% 4.0

How does home ownership vary by household size?

Home ownership is most common for 2-person households (69%), 3-person households (62%) and 4-person households (67%). It is less common at either end of the spectrum – in single households (55%) and and 5-person households. Indeed, only 47% of households with 6 or more people are owned, meaning that the majority (53%) are rented.

How does home ownership vary by occupation?

As you might expect, the largest proportion of home owners are among highly paid occupations such as managers, directors and senior officials (78%) and more general professional occupations (76%). Around a third of people in these professions own their property outright.

Those in elementary occupations, including cleaning, distributing leaflets and collecting waste, are least likely to be home owners, with 41% owning a property and 59% renting. Those in caring, leisure and service occupations were also more likely rent than own, with 54% of households renting and 46% owning.

Methodology

The figures for home ownership are taken from the 2021 Census, the most comprehensive and accurate source for understanding levels of home ownership in England and Wales. Please note that percentages may have changed since then, but this is the most recent accurate data available.

Click here for more research. For all media enquiries, please contact

Matt Mckenna
UK Communications Manager
T: +44 20 8191 8806
matt.mckenna@finder.com@MichHutchison/in/matthewmckenna2

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